Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Swine Flu Can Transfer To Human Race

Swine Flu Can Transfer To Human Race

Have you been watching the news and/or read your daily broadsheets at all recently? If so, you’ve probably heard the term “Swine Flu” bouncing around a lot. While you are in the pigs fair or your hog race backyard and you were ever unlucky enough to be sneezed on by a sick pig, would you catch its flu? Not necessarily — it takes more than simply breathing in a pig's germs (just like kissing his messy and slimy nose) for you to get sick.

While most people come down with the normal human flu at some point, it’s not really a danger to anyone but the very young (from 0 month to 7 years old) and the very old (from 60 to 90 years old). Fortunately, the human immune system is there to recognize and neutralize the effects of the virus. Each year, the virus mutates just slightly and most of the population is once again susceptible to the disease. This is why a new vaccine must be created regularly to reflect the most recent influenza mutants out in the environment.

When the human flu virus mutates its external proteins, the body’s defenses still recognize them and eventually mount a response (the period of sickness occurs while the body is developing that response). If this failed to happen, you would eventually succumb to the virus and you will die.

If a people’s immune system might not immediately stop a new human influenza infection, it does recognize that new mutant and begin building a response. Avian and swine peplomers, on the other hand, are not easily recognized by the human system because our race did not include pressure from those particular viruses. The animal influenza has been able to mutate enough to cross the species bridge and infect humans as well as humans we have come into a close contact with the animals (e.g. as a hog racer, we care for them and eventually sold out to the market for more extra income) that carry these viruses.

In the past this would not have been a worldwide epidemic. An infected village might just die out in isolation (the nearest hospital was more than 10 miles away from the village). Now it’s different: if a traveler can become infected from a hog race backyard in one region and fly thousands of miles to another, long before they experience symptoms of possible flu.

So what’s the fall away message from all of this? Can we do anything? Well as individuals it’s wise to go through the same sanitary practices as we might during flu season. We must be aware if our pigs catch flu during the season so that we put them instantly in a quarantine area that no other individual will take care of your pigs without protective suits. And traveling to places which have reported Swine Flu cases probably isn’t a great idea.

There are people as you observe in different agencies and they have spent their whole lives preparing for just these kinds of epidemics and they are currently working very hard to provide the public with the best information and advice about the Swine Flu.

They are only there waiting for your attention and willingness to diagnose if you suspected yourself a possible Swine Flu virus. They are there to help you live longer.

By: Sutiyo Na
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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

10 Home Cleaning Tips To Keep The H1n1 Influenza Virus At Bay

10 Home Cleaning Tips To Keep The H1n1 Influenza Virus At Bay

The worldwide flu news headlines on the outbreak of the new virus – formerly known as swine influenza - are enough to scare a small child.

Throw in the World Health Organization's elevating the worldwide pandemic alert level to 5 last week - just one step below full pandemic – and it’s enough to understandably send frightened grown-ups into defensive action mode.

But what exactly is it that we at home can do to prevent the spread of the H1N1 flu virus?

There's No Place Like Home

President Felipe Calderon of Mexico put it best in his first televised address this week since the outbreak started: “There is no safer place than your own home to avoid being infected with the flu virus,” Calderon said.

And once we’re there, the better we know how to keep a virus from taking root or spreading in our home, the safer our home and the family members inside will be.

This is especially important for parents, because as we know, the flu hits younger children harder because they haven’t built up many immunities. Worse, the flu vaccine is in short supply in many places and babies can’t take it, anyway.

It helps to remember the reason why we usually get colds and flu this time of year. Not because of the weather - but because we're all cooped up with each other (and each other's germs) indoors.

Rhinoviruses can survive up to three hours on skin and inanimate objects. That means when little Johnny hacks away without covering his mouth at preschool, your little Annie has ample opportunity to come in contact with his germs. And to bring them home alive.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, spread of the swine influenza A H1N1 virus is thought to occur the same way: mainly from person to person through the coughing or sneezing of people with influenza.

Additionally, sometimes people may become infected by touching something with viruses on it and then touching his nose or mouth.
So What's a Mom to Do?
While we can’t do much about the worldwide spread of influenza, there are 10 simple but effective things we can do inside our home:

1 Wash Your Hands. And make your kids wash their hands. A lot. (Tell them they can finally play in water.) Avoid the anti-bacterial soaps that may actually cause more viruses in the long run by making germs resistant. Unless kids' hands are visibly dirty, encourage them to use the alcohol-based cleansers that clean without water. These cleansers kill germs by dehydration. You can buy small bottles and pack them in your kids' backpacks for use at school. If they need soap and water, they must scrub vigorously for at least 30 seconds to kill germs. (Tell Annie to wash while she sings the Alphabet Song. That should do it.) The more you wash, the safer you are.

2 Teach kids to sneeze or cough into a tissue and then throw the tissue away. And then wash their hands again!

3 Get a Flu Shot. If flu shots are available, make sure everyone in your family who is old enough gets one.

4 Don’t Share. Tell you kids not to drink after other kids or share food. And warn your daughters not to share lip-gloss.

5 Disinfect Your Home. What's the most germ-laden room of your house? Nope, it's not the bathroom. It's the kitchen -- especially the sink area. And the worst germ-breeding object in your house? The kitchen sponge or dishrag. The moistness in sponges creates an ideal growing environment for these nasty little creatures. Disinfect sponges periodically by wetting them and popping them into the microwave for two minutes; replace them at least once a week. Change dishrags daily.

6 Clean surfaces that may harbor germs with a good virus-killing disinfectant, such as Clorox or Lysol. Regularly clean doorknobs, faucets, countertops, keyboards, telephone receivers and any other frequently touched surface.

7 Take Care of yourself. Cold germs are around all the time. So why aren’t we sick all the time? Usually, healthy, well-nourished, well-rested people can fend off many germs. And if you do get sick, good health usually helps you recover faster. So make sure your family gets at least eight hours of sleep, eats healthy meals (lots of fruit and vegetables) and exercises daily. All the good stuff you should be doing, anyway!

8 Keep the Flu at Home. If you or your child is running a temperature, stay home! Do not go out and infect others. And if you have younger kids, think twice before sending them to indoor amusement parks where toddlers may have been drooling over plastic balls, etc. And avoid people who have been sick. Adults are contagious up to seven days after experiencing symptoms. And kids are contagious longer than that. Parents may want to consider talking to his or her employer about working from home.

9 If you do get the flu, start antiviral prescription medications such as oseltamivir or zanamivir right away. If you take these drugs within the first 48 hours of symptoms, they can lessen the severity. Otherwise, all you can do is drink a lot of liquids and try to sleep through it. If your symptoms are severe – and particularly if you have difficulty breathing – see a doctor.

10 Finally, call a family meeting to discuss your family’s plans for a pandemic. Who will care for the kids if mom and dad are both sick? Be sure to stock up on cleaning supplies, such as soap and alcohol-based hand wash, fever reducers, lots of water or other hydrating fluids, and plenty of tissues.

By: Mrs. Clean Jeans
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